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Art Rupe

  • Year:
  • Inducted by:
    Lloyd Price
  • Category:
    Ahmet Ertegun Award

Hall of Fame Essay


Parke Puterbaugh

As founder of Specialty Records, one of the premier independent labels of the rock & roll era, Art Rupe signed and recorded numerous vanguard artists in the areas of rhythm & blues, gospel, and rock & roll.

He was also an important figure in the postwar music industry, helming a label that helped bring a niche market (rhythm & blues) into the mainstream. Beyond that, Specialty played a role in igniting the rock & roll revolution by introducing the world to the incendiary music of Little Richard.

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